Bone Mineral Density and Androgen Levels in Elderly Males
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To clarify the relationship of sex male hormones and bone in men, we studied in 140 healthy elderly men (aged 55–90 years) the relation between serum levels of androgens and related sex hormones, bone mineral density (BMD) at different sites, and other parameters related to bone metabolism. Our results show a slight decrease of serum-free testosterone with age, with an increase of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) in a third of the elderly subjects studied. BMD decreased significantly with age in all regions studied, except in the lumbar spine. We found a positive correlation between body mass index (BMI) and BMD at the lumbar spine and femoral neck (P < 0.001). No relationship was found (uni- and multivariate regression analysis) between serum androgens or sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) and BMD. We found a positive correlation of vitamin D binding protein (DBP) and osteocalcin with lumbar spine BMD and with BMI, DBP, IGF-1, and PTH with femoral neck BMD. In conclusion, there is a slight decline in free testosterone and BMD in the healthy elderly males. However, sex male hormones are not correlated to the decrease in hip BMD. Other age-related factors must be associated with bone loss in elderly males.
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